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Departmental Public Expenditure

Mr. Wallace: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much his Department expects to spend on research and development, excluding expenditure from the science, innovation and technology budgets, in (a) 2009-10, (b) 2010-11 and (c) 2011-12. [314194]

Mr. Quentin Davies: Research and development spending in the MOD is spread across a number of key areas within the department. As such, no centralised R and D budget exists. In financial year 2007-08, the total MOD R and D spend, excluding science innovation technology, was some £1.6 billion. We anticipate that this will remain at a comparable level over the next few years, although departmental expenditure limits have not yet been set for the years beyond 2010-11.

Mr. Wallace: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much his Department spent on research and development, excluding expenditure from the science, innovation and technology budget, in the financial year 2008-09. [314195]

Mr. Quentin Davies: R and D figures for 2008-09 are part of a National Statistic and the release of these figures is embargoed until their publication in late March. The most recent figures that are available 2007-08, indicate some £1.6 billion was spent by MOD on R and D, excluding the science innovation technology spend.

Figures for 2007-08 and earlier are available in the annual MOD Defence Statistics publication, a copy of which is available in the Library of the House.

Haiti: Earthquakes

Mr. Dai Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much has been spent by his Department in providing logistical support to the emergency services in Haiti following the recent earthquake. [314039]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: Spending by the Ministry of Defence (MOD) in support of Operation Panlake, the assistance provided by MOD to Haiti on behalf of the Department for International Development (DFID), will be recovered from DFID. At present, it is not possible to say how much MOD has/will spend in support of Operation Panlake. The work is still being scoped and costings are incomplete.

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Military Aircraft: Procurement

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether a final decision has been made on the procurement of the Boeing RC-135 to replace the Nimrod R.1. [314373]

Mr. Quentin Davies: A decision is expected shortly regarding the replacement of the Nimrod R1.

Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent discussions he has had with BAE Systems on the procurement of a successor to the Nimrod R1; and when he last met representatives of BAE Systems to discuss such procurement. [314374]

Mr. Quentin Davies: I met with local MPs, BAE Systems Union representatives and BAE System officials on 15 December 2009 to discuss the replacement of the Nimrod R1 and to listen to their concerns regarding the closure of BAE Systems Woodford.

Navy: Deployment

Mr. Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which ships of the Royal Navy are deployed on operations at sea; and where each is deployed. [314054]

Bill Rammell: As at 28 January 2010 the following Royal Navy ships are deployed on operations:

Middle East

Horn of Africa


South Atlantic

Home Waters

Royal Navy ships deployed on Exercises:



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In addition two Frigates, two Mine Counter Measures Vessels and one RFA ship are at notice for contingent operations in home waters and RFA Largs Bay is preparing to sail on Op Panlake off Haiti.

Radioactive Materials: Imports

Mr. Dai Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 18 January 2010, Official Report, columns 17-18W, on radioactive materials: imports, what the provisions are of the strict materials accountancy regime to which reference was made in the answer; which organisation carries out the accountancy checks; and to whom that organisation reports. [313541]

Mr. Bob Ainsworth: The Ministry of Defence (MOD) materials accountancy regime reflects requirements in the Ionising Radiation Regulations 1999, including its associated Code of Practice, and International Atomic Energy Agency standards. These require the maintenance of accounts for radioactive material holdings and for annual inventory verification.

Within the MOD, the application of the materials accountancy regime is the responsibility of the Strategic Weapons Project Team (SWPT), part of the Defence Equipment and Support area. Individual site operators are responsible for accurate accountancy and reporting of accountable material by quantity and location; their arrangements are required to include a robust internal audit process and physical checks of holdings.

The responsibility for ensuring the conduct of audits of site operator arrangements, in respect of MOD-owned accountable material, lies with the head of SWPT, who is accountable to me in this capacity. Such an audit would include further physical inventory checking to verify the operator's on-site inventory.

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Written Questions: Government Responses

Jo Swinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence when he plans to answer question (a) 310011, (b) 310012 and (c) 310013 on Milngavie reservoir, tabled on 6 January 2010. [314200]

Mr. Kevan Jones: I replied to the hon. Member on 26 January 2010, Official Report, column 797W.



Mr. Hepburn: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many people were convicted of (a) domestic burglary and (b) drug offences in (i) Jarrow constituency, (ii) South Tyneside, (iii) the North East and (iv) England and Wales in each year since 2006. [313487]

Claire Ward: Information showing the number of persons found guilty at all courts in the north-east Government office region (GOR) and England and Wales for domestic burglary and drugs offences in 2006 and 2007 (latest available) can be found in the following table.

Court proceedings data are not available at parliamentary constituency level. Data are given in the table for the north-east GOR in which the Jarrow constituency and South Tyneside are located.

Data for 2008 were published on 28 January 2010 but were not available at time of preparing the response. The hon. Member may wish to request 2008 data in a further question.

The number of persons found guilty at all courts in the north-east Government office region (GOR) and England and Wales, for domestic burglary and drugs offences, 2006 and 2007( 1,2)
North East GOR England and Wales

2006 2007 2006 2007

Burglary in a dwelling





Misuse of drugs





(1) Includes: Cleveland police force area; Durham police force area; Northumbria police force area.
(2) The statistics relate to persons for whom these offences were the principal offences for which they were dealt with. When a defendant has been found guilty of two or more offences the principal offence is the offence for which the heaviest penalty is imposed. Where the same disposal is imposed for two or more offences, the offence selected is the offence for which the statutory maximum penalty is the most severe.
Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from large administrative data systems generated by the courts and police forces. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when those data are used.
Justice Statistics Analytical Services-Ministry of Justice

Departmental Written Questions

David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what average time his Department took to answer questions for (a) ordinary written answer and (b) written answer on a named day in the last 12 months. [313671]

Mr. Wills: The Ministry of Justice answered 2,923 ordinary written questions and 790 named day questions from 1 January 2009 to 31 December 2009. On average it has taken 6.14 sitting days to answer ordinary written questions and 2.22 sitting days to answer named day questions in Parliament.

Fines: Surcharges

Mr. Grieve: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how much he expects to be raised from the victims surcharge in each of the next five years. [313523]

Mr. Straw: The victims surcharge is a £15 charge imposed on fines given in the magistrates and Crown courts in England and Wales on all offences committed on or after 1 April 2007.

As receipts are dependent on the number of fines imposed and the enforcement rates achieved it is difficult to forecast future revenue from the surcharge with
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exactness. It is estimated that, as currently implemented, around £8 million will be raised from the surcharge, on fines, in 2009-10 and each year thereafter.

Offenders: Foreigners

Damian Green: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many foreign nationals were charged with a criminal offence in each year since 2005. [313502]

Claire Ward: Statistical information recorded centrally on the Court Proceedings database held by the Ministry of Justice does not include a defendant's nationality. This information would be recorded should the defendant be sentenced to custody.

Prisons: Employment

Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many hours on average were worked by prisoners in prisons in the latest period for which figures are available; and how much remuneration on average prisoners received per week for such work in that period. [313863]

Maria Eagle: During the period April to December 2009 prisoners in England and Wales spent on average 11.82 hours a week in employment activities. Figures for the average remuneration received by prisoners over the same period are not available. However, a snapshot survey carried out in April/May 2007 showed an average rate of £9.60 a week.

Prosecutions: Council Tax

Julia Goldsworthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many people have been prosecuted for non-payment of council tax in each local authority area in each of the last 10 years. [314382]

Claire Ward: Proceedings at magistrates courts for offences of non-payment of council tax cannot be separately identified on the Ministry of Justice Court proceedings database as they form part of a miscellaneous group which cannot be separately analysed.

Snow and Ice

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what estimate he has made of the costs to his Department arising from the severe weather conditions in the period 4 January to 18 January 2010; and if he will make a statement. [313591]

Mr. Wills: No overall assessment has been made of the financial impact of the severe weather conditions in the period 4 January to 18 January 2010 on the Ministry of Justice and its executive agencies (the National Offender Management Service, Her Majesty's Courts Service, the Tribunals Service and the Office of the Public Guardian).

Regular communications were issued to staff across the organisation via intranet and email ahead of, and during, the period of severe weather advising on the actions to be taken. Advice was as follows:

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Following the adoption of these principles, the impact on departmental business is considered to be relatively low. There were a number of closures of courts and tribunals at various stages and some courts, offices and prisons had to cope with fewer staff for short periods. In general, business continuity plans were activated without incurring additional expenditure, with work being prioritised and postponed. It would incur disproportionate cost to contact every local office, prison, court, probation board or trust and tribunal to obtain a financial impact assessment and to analyse and collate this information.

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